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World Literature Today

Haruki Murakami’s storytelling world.

Haruki Murakami’s storytelling world.

Welch, Patricia

IN THE 1980s THE JAPANESE ECONOMY WAS BOOMING. Japan loomed in the world’s and its own imagination as an unstoppable economic machine. To many, Japan was a suitable model for economic and social development: the economy was great, schools were good, and violence nearly nonexistent. Its successes were spoken of in almost utopian terms (though occasionally as an economic threat not to be ignored). Some negative aspects of Japanese society were even spun as positives, internally and abroad. And in Japan, many seemed supremely confident as they viewed the future. Perhaps however, their …